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article imageIconic sci-fi monsters the Ice Warriors return to Doctor Who

By Mathew Wace Peck     Feb 12, 2013 in Entertainment
The Ice Warriors, one of Doctor Who’s oldest adversaries, are to finally make their long-awaited return to the BBC’s science-fiction television drama series, during its 2013 run of episodes, it has been revealed.
Rumour of the return of the Ice Warriors has surfaced on and off for several years. However, apart from a name check in 2009’s The Waters of Mars, by Russell T Davies, the Martian creatures themselves haven’t been seen in Doctor Who for four decades.
The news of their imminent return was revealed earlier today by Doctor Who's executive producer, Caroline Skinner, in an interview with SFX magazine.
Speaking exclusively to SFX, Skinner said, “We’ve got the most fantastic episode by Mark Gatiss, where we are bringing back the Ice Warriors … on a submarine! It’s a really wonderful kind of ‘bunker’ episode [with] a classic monster which Mark has brought his own inimitable twist to.”
The Ice Warriors are a reptilian-like race, originally from the planet Mars. They first appeared in Doctor Who in the late 1960s – when Patrick Troughton was playing the Second Doctor – in The Ice Warriors (1967), by their creator Brian Hayles, and The Seeds of Death (1969), also by Hayles. Two further appearances – both again written by Hayles – were made in the 1970s, this time during Jon Pertwee’s Third Doctor tenure: The Curse of Peladon (1972) and its sequel, The Monster of Peladon (1974).
The Big Five
In classic Doctor Who, the Ice Warriors are regarded as one of the Big Five Doctor Who monsters, alongside the Daleks, Cybermen, Sontarans and Yeti.
In the era of 21st-century Doctor Who, the Daleks, Cybermen and Sontarans have all made several appearances since 2005. The Daleks’ most recent appearance in the show was last year’s series opener, Asylum of the Daleks, and the Cybermen are due to return this spring in the Neil Gaiman-penned story The Last Cyberman. With the Ice Warriors finally returning to the ranks of Doctor Who, that just leaves the Yeti.
In the Doctor Who universe, although the Yeti look like woolly creatures, they are in fact alien robots controlled by the Great Intelligence. To date, the Yeti have appeared in Doctor Who on just three occasions, making them the least-featured of the Big Five.
Their first two appearances were alongside Troughton’s Second Doctor in The Abominable Snowmen (1967) and The Web of Fear (1968) – both stories written by their creators, Mervyn Haisman and Henry Lincoln. A lone Yeti then appeared briefly, again menacing Troughton’s Doctor, in The Five Doctors, the multi-Doctor special by Terrance Dicks that celebrated Doctor Who’s 20th anniversary in 1983.
Return of the Yeti
Although the Yeti themselves have not been seen in the TV series for thirty years, the Great Intelligence appeared in the 2012 Doctor Who Christmas special, The Snowmen, by Steven Moffat, fuelling speculation that they too will return sometime during Doctor Who’s 50th-anniversary year.
Doctor Who returns to TV screens this Easter, for an eight-episode run. Later in the year, a number of specials will be broadcast, too. These will include: an as-yet-untitled episode, by Moffat, to be broadcast on Saturday, 23 November, the exact day fifty years ago that the first-ever episode – An Unearthly Child – was broadcast; a one-off drama by GatissAn Adventure in Space and Time – that will explore the birth of the series; and the traditional Christmas special.
Matt Smith will continue to play the Eleventh throughout the year, while David Bradley will play the First Doctor in An Adventure in Space and Time.
More about Doctor Who, Ice Warriors, Matt smith, David Bradley, Mark gatiss
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